Yogi Adityanath seeks to pacify sadhus

The UP chief minister went on an ashram hopping spree, promising 'there will be a temple'

By Piyush Srivastava in Lucknow
  • Published 8.11.18, 2:05 AM
  • Updated 8.11.18, 8:39 AM
  • 2 mins read
Yogi Adityanath Telegraph file picture

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath hopped from one ashram to another for private meetings on Wednesday and asserted in public that “there was a temple, there is a temple and there will be a temple” in Ayodhya although the matter is pending before the Supreme Court.

Adityanath, whose pre-Diwali announcements rechristening Faizabad as Ayodhya and promising an airport named after Lord Ram fell short of the expectations of sadhus, visited as many as a dozen ashrams on Wednesday.

Sources said the chief minister was aware of the disappointment of the sadhus of Ayodhya whose expectations had risen after he had promised to deliver “good news”.

Although the details of the closed-door meetings were not made public, one sadhu and sources close to the others claimed that Adityanath tried to convince them that bringing back Narendra Modi to power in 2019 was necessary “for the Hindu community” and “only the BJP is interested in building a Ram temple”.

“It is true that we are disillusioned with the way Adityanath first promised us good news on the Ram temple on the occasion of Diwali and then backtracked. But he told us it would become impossible if we opposed and defeated the BJP in 2019. The sadhus will hold a meeting during the Ardh Kumbh in Allahabad in January and take the final decision,” said the sadhu who did not want to be named.

Adityanath lunched with Mahanth Suresh Das at the Digambar Akhara and later told a news conference that his government was trying its best for building the Ram temple.

“People reach Ayodhya to offer prayers in Ram Lalla temple. I also try to go there during my visit. There was a temple, there is a temple and there will be a temple. All we want is a magnificent temple there,” the chief minister said.

Reminded that the sadhus appeared not happy with him, and slogans were raised during Tuesday’s public meeting, the chief minister said: “All the sadhus of Ayodhya are with me.”

The crowd on Tuesday had raised the slogan: “Yogi tum insaf karo, mandir ka nirmal karo (Yogi, do justice, build the temple).”

“All options are open with us. We believe in the constitutional norms and looking for a democratic solution of the problem,” Adityanath added.

Mahanth Paramahans Das, who had declared last week that he would go on a hunger strike from November 29 if the construction of the temple was not started by then, said on Wednesday that his hunger strike would start on December 6.

“It would be the 26th anniversary of the Babri demolition on December 6. So, I

have decided to start my hunger strike from then if the government didn’t start the temple construction. I am ready to die for the temple and expose the BJP government which is cheating the country in the name of Lord Ram,” Das said.

“We know that this issue cannot be solved in the Supreme Court in the near future and we need a law from Parliament,” Das added.